So as you may or may not know, a screenshot showing off the words “Dishonored II” came out on Monday. Whether it’s a leaked photo or a made up one, we don’t yet quite know. I’d honestly be surprised if one of the Arkane Studios wasn’t hard at work on a sequel considering how well the first game was received and due to the large amount of lore the developer went out of it’s way to create for this franchise. I mean, the world is massively big, being dominated by four landmasses each with their own unique qualities and characteristics.
If the screenshot is real, it would appear that this new game will take place on the continent of Tyvia to the north. If you were reading the many books and collectibles strewn throughout Dishonored you may have come across a book called “The Isle of Tyvia” which goes on to describe the northern island continent in great detail. From that, we can determine that Tyvia is based on the colder climate and culture of Eastern European countries.
Whether or not the screenshot is real or merely created to tug at our heartstrings, this news got me thinking about potential sequels and what I’d love to see added to the franchise. I won’t lie, it was fairly difficult putting this list together due to how fond I was and still am of the first person stealth game. If we’re talking a sequel, that most likely means “new gen” systems are being targeted and with those consoles additional opportunities open up. It’s better to think of the following wish list as a way for Arkane to enhance the game rather than fix things.
Open World: For those of us that have played it, I think we can all agree at how great the levels and world as a whole are. The city of Dunwall struck me as a fully fleshed out and interesting setting that really made you want to stop for a moment and take it all in. Makes sense considering the guy who created City 17 in Half-Life 2, Viktor Antonov, is the one who developed Dunwall. Even with all this praise, Dishonored was made up of individual levels so the city as a whole felt a bit disjointed. Typically, you’d start at the main hub space and then be taken to specific parts of the city to carry out your mission. How great would it be if the entire city was open to you to explore? No more load screens, go where you need to or want to explore. With the next generation hardware backing the game engine, there’s really no reason they couldn’t go this route. It seems to be one of Thief’s strengths so why not apply it to this franchise as well?
As an aside, if you’re going to have an open world, you’ll need to also populate it with things to do such as collectibles and even more side missions or activities. There’s nothing worse then being able to explore a vast landscape with nothing to do in it.
Stronger Combat: Okay, not all of us have the patience to carry out perfect stealth. Dishonored did a good job at giving players options in terms of combat situations but why not try to flesh it out a bit more. I preferred the stealth route but the few times I did go toe to toe with an enemy it felt alright. I know that stealth is the priority for this game and that’s perfectly fine, but why not spice up the combat a little for those who want it? There’s definitely room for improvement here.
More Customization/Progression: Before you scream ‘blasphemy’ at me, just know that I’m not trying to turn Dishonored into an RPG. One of the aspects I enjoyed with the first game was the ability to add skill points into various powers and apply bone charms which granted me additional bonuses. Why not flesh this aspect out a bit more? For me, more options and choices are never a better thing. While the first game definitely gave players various options, I’d like to see more active and passive abilities to pick from further allowing people to really customize their experience to how they want to play. Just so we’re clear, I’m not promoting the inclusion of skill trees. This isn’t intended to be a role playing game so that would be going a bit overboard. Whether you’re someone who likes to go toe to toe with the enemy, avoid combat entirely, or likes to mix the two, I’d love to see the game support many different play styles similar to how Splinter Cell Blacklist expertly handled that aspect. Support the player’s style rather than shoehorning them into a particular direction.
With all that said, we should probably take all of this with a grain of salt knowing what people are capable of these days. I mean, look at that “TheSurvivor2299” website from last year which people truly believed was going to be Fallout 4. As it turns out, it was an extremely elaborate and well made hoax. While I do believe more Dishonored is coming at some point, for now, we’ll have to wait for official word.